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View Full Version : Rumor mill - HD may be sold



DanK
03-16-2010, 6:59 PM
Check it out.

http://www.jsonline.com/business/87811297.html

NITRO
03-16-2010, 7:02 PM
hmmm thats very interesting.

Chris300s
03-16-2010, 7:19 PM
Sounds like an opportunity to me. Maybe they'll quit focusing on the garbage wagons instead focus on performance Sporty's and Buell type performers? "Dear HD, how about a Softail that'll go around a corner and doesn't weigh 900 lbs.?"

Chris

born2boogie
03-16-2010, 7:22 PM
Maybe they'll go belly up, so I won't have to hear everyone talk about what they're doin wrong... again... and again... aaaaaand again.

NITRO
03-16-2010, 7:28 PM
I would think it would be more likely some other successful company would come in and retool and use their name and image but just run it with a modern business plan rather than it just going belly up. Bring the bikes up to date. I think alot of die-hard HD riders would not be happy with it.

xoldblueeyesisdeadx
03-16-2010, 7:30 PM
"Maybe the new owners will finally update Harley to a 20th century engine and suspension. "
actual quote, from a follower of above site, about the decline of the brand. Haha, guess some people won't be happy until they build a noiseless engine that gets 100 miles to the gallon and can hit corners and bumps without spilling their coffee on the way to their banker job. I do believe that harleys are more advanced then needed. you can hold the cup holders sir, my bike if fine without them. good thing i lost interest with newer hds anyway, hope my kid has something to look forward to though. im sure the next generation will be chopping the same bikes and cars from the 30s to the 70s like we are now with the state of the auto industry nowadays.

Zooligan
03-16-2010, 7:47 PM
I'm sure the Japanese would be likely buyers (along with others I'm sure). They sure seem to know their bikes, even (maybe especially) the old Harleys. Look at sparetime.jp and Zero Engineering. They actually get stripped down minimalist styling.

Hell, if Harley had gone retro instead of twinkie, maybe the thought of buying them out wouldn't even make the rumor mill. Even the American auto makers got the whole retro thing with the Ford Mustang, Chevy Camaro, and Dodge Charger, while HD keeps pushing the fallacy that you can buy a lifestyle off a wall and bolt it on/wear it.

born2boogie
03-16-2010, 7:49 PM
I would think it would be more likely some other successful company would come in and retool and use their name and image but just run it with a modern business plan rather than it just going belly up. Bring the bikes up to date. I think alot of die-hard HD riders would not be happy with it.

I would much rather see it become a company worth paying attention to again. I really doubt anyone would let Harley get that bad off.

DanK
03-16-2010, 8:02 PM
I would think it would be more likely some other successful company would come in and retool and use their name and image but just run it with a modern business plan rather than it just going belly up. Bring the bikes up to date. I think alot of die-hard HD riders would not be happy with it.

I think that was AMF's plan 30 years ago. The people that are interested in HD are a private equity firm (bankers). Kind of like the Chrysler situation. Just look how well that turned out.

turtle
03-16-2010, 9:35 PM
Just as long as their are old harleys,there will be old harley riders!

revmike
03-16-2010, 9:43 PM
The nice thing is that some people got to unload some of their Harley stock for a better than expected price. HD, doing so well that takeover talks drive your stock up.... ??? there's a message in there somewhere....

Of course, it has nothing to do with making motorcycles, just rich fuckers making money... Nabisco didn't make a better cracker after these crackers bought them.

Whoops, did I say crackers? Yeah, I did....

Love thy neighbor...

~Rev Mike

xllance
03-16-2010, 9:44 PM
I don't think H-D's problem was the bikes they sell, hell just drive by the dealer during a HOG meeting or free hot dog day, they're everywhere. The problem was they have too much invested in all these super dealer multi-million dollar boutiques. The economy hit the fan and the loyal yuppies stopped trading in their toys after a year of buying Taiwan chrome for them.

Joey
03-16-2010, 9:46 PM
Sounds like an opportunity to me. Maybe they'll quit focusing on the garbage wagons instead focus on performance Sporty's and Buell type performers? "Dear HD, how about a Softail that'll go around a corner and doesn't weigh 900 lbs.?"

Chris

The problem with Softails not handling is the design. It was flawed from the start.

revmike
03-16-2010, 9:49 PM
I don't think H-D's problem was the bikes they sell, hell just drive by the dealer during a HOG meeting or free hot dog day, they're everywhere. The problem was they have too much invested in all these super dealer multi-million dollar boutiques. The economy hit the fan and the loyal yuppies stopped trading in their toys after a year of buying Taiwan chrome for them.
Yeah, they had one here. 20,000 sq feet of clothes and gear and chrome and 5 bikes. What a waste. But, it isn't my industry. What do I know?

philbey
03-16-2010, 9:52 PM
aren't private equity firms notorious for buying companies out, stripping and flogging all the tasty assets off to make lots of coin, overhauling a much reduced form of the original company and flogging that as well a year later?

ridemore16
03-16-2010, 9:58 PM
the goal of any financial transaction is to "buy low and sell high"....doesn't matter if it's a private equity firm, venture capitalist, or guys like us who always search for "barn finds"!!!

I worked for a small private company in the beverage industry that went through 2 buyouts before going public (and eventually out of business). Most of the time, these deals make a select few a ton of coin while the rest of the employees update their resumes.

Beefdrippings
03-16-2010, 10:18 PM
If they went "retro" there would be even more shit talk about them and their customers on forums like this.Could you imagine all the bitching about douchebags and newbies if the motor co. sold some sort of "knuckle-ish" bike?

billdozer
03-16-2010, 11:16 PM
If they went "retro" there would be even more shit talk about them and their customers on forums like this.Could you imagine all the bitching about douchebags and newbies if the motor co. sold some sort of "knuckle-ish" bike?

Probably the only guarantee on the whole deal if it actually happened would be that everyone wold bitch, no matter what. Maybe it would make my evo a collector's item?

I can't even begin to predict or understand what it might mean, but if I worked for HD or for a supplier I'd be pretty nervous.

Like most of these things, it'll probably make a few at the top even more rich while the work-a-day guy struggles even harder.

respek
03-17-2010, 1:35 AM
Sad thing is if HD gets bought up all they will do is find more corners to cut more ways to outsource the work and shit can more American employees. More then likely they may even think that they need to market the "life style" more. cater to the baby boomers that cant ride anymore but will take their social security checks to the HD amusement park and get ridden around on the 3 seater trikes that will may come out in a year or 2. As long as they think Harley shower curtains and Bar and shiled toilet covers sell they are going to make them. My only fear is for the American worker. Some german pfennig pincher wont care about biker history or anything other then cash.

onigoroshi
03-17-2010, 3:51 AM
Apparently KKR raised a lot more cash over the last decade than it could use on the companies it already owns so it's turning into a bloated amoeba, sucking up otherwise healthy companies. This happened in the 1960s, big conglomerates emerged that had no real stake in the companies they owned, it was just assumed they could profit from economies of scale -- they all went belly up in the 1970s.

Until Eric Buell's non-compete clause ends there won't be any more innovation in the American motorcycle market.

NITRO
03-17-2010, 7:10 AM
Probably the only guarantee on the whole deal if it actually happened would be that everyone wold bitch, no matter what. Maybe it would make my evo a collector's item?

I can't even begin to predict or understand what it might mean, but if I worked for HD or for a supplier I'd be pretty nervous.

Like most of these things, it'll probably make a few at the top even more rich while the work-a-day guy struggles even harder.

Bill I used to sell bikes for HD about 3 years ago, one of the bigger dealerships in AZ.....and I got downsized....the economy wasn't even that bad yet and people were still buying 25 thousand dollar bikes. Just this last year I see one of the biggest dealerships here in Ohio going under, and one of my HD mechanic friends is down to 3 days a week and asking us if we're hiring. The issues the company is facing don't surprise me at all, and I find it very sad but the decisions they made brought them here.

xllance
03-17-2010, 7:22 AM
They basically just got too big for their britches.

number1son
03-18-2010, 10:17 PM
I just hope the new company that owns it can manage to get that patent on the potato potato sound that the old hd couldn't get

Pesty03
03-19-2010, 12:58 AM
This kind of news scares the hell out of me... I'm currently attending MMI under the HD program.

revmike
03-19-2010, 7:38 AM
I'm pretty sure this is one of those speculation, might have been, things that just end up bumping the stock for a couple days.

The company they were talking about KKR, I think it is, probably wouldn't do much for day to day. Unless the CEO is a pissed off Buell fanatic. I mean if you OWN H-D, it is to build motorcycles, I'd imagine -- heavyweight cruisers.

Harley's mistake is probably paring off the diversity of the Buell line, rather than paring down the offerings but maintaining a Sport bike line.

Erik Buell explained it though, saying Harley was more worried about maintaining their image as a heavyweight cruiser company rather than blurring, possibly unsuccessfully, their image and competing directly against sport bike manufacturers....

The biggest worry would be that NO ONE would buy out Harley and it would end up at the side of the road....

~Rev Mike

Richard
03-21-2010, 2:29 PM
I hope they start making golf carts again. R

oldmansporty63
03-21-2010, 5:08 PM
I hope they start making golf carts again. R

and snowmobiles

xllance
03-21-2010, 6:13 PM
On the Buell end of this topic.........I think if they would've advertised "free ride at the racetrack day "for the new Buells, they would've caught on. Then H-D might not have been so eager to axe it.